Reconfiguring the Landscape in Greenwich.

Hosted by the SOUND/IMAGE Research Group, University of Greenwich.

17th-24th July / 25th-27th October 2022.

In 2022, the SOUND/IMAGE Research Group at the University of Greenwich hosted one of the Reconfiguring the Landscape international workshops. Unlike previous workshops, we decided to split the work over two periods. The first period was from the 17th to the 24th of July, and the second was from the 25th to the 27th of October. During the first period, members of the artistic team were joined by members of the SOUND/IMAGE Research Group to investigate several historic sites in Greenwich. In the second period, the artistic team performed an outdoor concert in Greenwich Market. The work was carried out in collaboration with researchers Brona Martin, Emma Margetson, and Angela McArthur.

17th-24th July

In the workshop we chose four case study sites, and recorded each of them from multiple viewpoints using three EM32 microphones spaced five meters apart, a parabolic microphone and close microphones, and recorded 3D impulse responses using the icosahedral loudspeaker (IKO), two EM32 microphones and the Spat5 Sweep Measurement Kit.

Location 1: The Greenwich Foot Tunnel, which crosses beneath the River Thames in East London, linking Greenwich on the south bank with Millwall on the north. It opened in 1902.

Location 2: The interior of Queen's House (a former royal residence built between 1616 and 1635) and outside around Greenwich park.

Location 3: Greenwich foreshore.

Location 4: Greenwich Market.

We then returned to a project space at the University of Greenwich, which had been set up with three rings of six loudspeakers (similar to the Studio5 project room in the IRCAM workshop, but now with three rather than two rings). Here we listened to the three spaced EM32 recordings which we had previously synchronised. This listening situation allowed us to understand the study sites from three viewpoints at the same time, as well as to walk through the space and explore how the 3D sound-field differed from our previous work using just one EM32. Many interesting new temporal spatial features were revealed, some of which are from reality, some of which are artefacts of the ambisonics layering. The video documentation below describes our method and results in more detail.

Documentation video: interviews with Natasha Barrett, Andrew Hill and Nadine Schütz, and video footage from the workshop.

25th-27th October 2022

We returned in October after having collaborated online during the previous months to produce and perform an outdoor concert in Greenwich Market. The concert was a live improvisation where we manipulated and mixed sound recordings made in July in real-time, and performed new live sounds from objects collected from our original sites. Sixteen Genelec 8050 loudspeakers were distributed around the walls of the market. This slideshow contains a few photos taken from our performance. We played two sets, each lasting 30 minutes. Before, after, and in between each set, Brona, Emma, and Angela played small studies that they had composed for the IKO, located in one of the side entrances to the market.

An extract from the concert, recorded with an EM32 placed in the centre of the market and decoded to binaural for headphone listening. Natasha Barrett: computer and sound transformations; Nadine Schütz: live sound making objects; Andrew Hill and Emma Margetson, computer and sound transformations.